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USC, Cal both try to pull out of slumps

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Teams with 0-2 starts in the Pac-12 will meet Wednesday night in Los Angeles when Cal visits Southern California.

The Golden Bears (4-9 overall) were swept at home last weekend by Arizona and Arizona State, while the Trojans (6-7) lost games at Oregon and Oregon State.

Cal outscored Arizona 55-46 in the second half of last week’s 100-81 loss to the Wildcats, and the Golden Bears led most of the game against Arizona State on Sunday. They squandered a 16-point lead in the second half in the 71-69 loss to the Sun Devils.

Cal committed 10 turnovers and shot 38.5 percent from the field in the second half against Arizona State.

“We didn’t execute down the stretch,” Cal coach Mark Madsen said. “That’s squarely on me as a head coach. We have to be better. We will be better. That’s what I told the guys in the locker room.”

Jaylon Tyson led the Bears with 20 points. He also had nine rebounds, five assists and six steals. The steals were two shy of the school record of eight set by Jason Kidd against Washington on Jan. 28, 1993.

USC has lost five of its last six games, including losses of 82-74 against Oregon and 86-70 against Oregon State.

An encouraging development in Saturday’s loss to Oregon State was the performance of Bronny James, eldest son of LeBron James.

Bronny James finished with a season-high 15 points playing in his fifth game since making his collegiate debut Dec. 10.

He shot 6 of 11 from the field in a season-high 20 minutes with two 3-pointers, three assists and a steal.

He continues to play under a minutes-played restriction since suffering a cardiac arrest during practice July 24.

“We feel comfortable playing him more minutes,” USC coach Andy Enfield said. “And as long as he can keep that energy up. I thought he did a great job.”

Boogie Ellis led USC with 20 points against Oregon State.

The Trojans will play their first game at home since Dec. 10, when they lost 84-79 to Long Beach State in overtime. They are 3-2 at home.

–Field Level Media

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